Bundesliga: Dortmund is new leader!

Borussia Dortmund seizes the top spot, as their rivals stumble a bit. The Neons look serious about defending their title.

Critical relegation battles in Freiburg and Kaiserslautern on Sunday, stay tuned…

BUNDESLIGA, Round 20

1. FC Nürnberg	      -   Borussia Dortmund	0:2 (0:0)    45,572  (Kehl, Barrios)
Hertha BSC Berlin     -   Hannover 96	        0:1 (0:0)    36,997  (Abdellaoue)
FC Schalke 04         -   FSV Mainz 05          1:1 (0:1)    60,557  (Obasi - Zidan)
Bayer Leverkusen      -   VfB Stuttgart	        2:2 (1:1)    28,000  (Kiessling, Rolfes - Schieber, Harnik)
VfL Wolfsburg	      -   Borussia M'gladbach	0:0 (0:0)    30,000
1899 Hoffenheim	      -   FC Augsburg	        2:2 (1:1)    22,500  (Mlapa, Salihovic - Mölders, Langkamp)
Hamburger SV	      -   Bayern München	1:1 (1:0)    57,000  (Sala - Olic)
SC Freiburg	      -   Werder Bremen	        Sunday
1. FC Kaiserslautern  -  1. FC Köln	        Sunday

 1  Borussia Dortmund (M)	20    13   4    3    45:14   +31    43
 2  Bayern München	  	20    13   2    5    47:14   +33    41
 3  FC Schalke 04 (P)	  	20    13   2    5    46:25   +21    41
----------------------------------------------------------------------
 4  Borussia M'gladbach	  	20    12   4    4    31:12   +19    40
 5  Bayer Leverkusen	  	20     8   7    5    28:27   +1     31
----------------------------------------------------------------------
 6  Werder Bremen	  	19     9   4    6    31:32   -1     31
 7  Hannover 96	  	        20     7   9    4    22:24   -2     30
 8  1899 Hoffenheim	  	20     6   6    8    22:24   -2     24
 9  VfL Wolfsburg	  	20     7   3   10    24:36   -12    24
10  VfB Stuttgart	  	20     6   5    9    26:28   -2     23
11  Hamburger SV	  	20     5   8    7    25:34   -9     23
12  1. FSV Mainz 05	  	20     5   7    8    28:34   -6     22
13  1. FC Köln	  	        19     6   3   10    28:40   -12    21
14  1. FC Nürnberg	  	20     6   3   11    19:31   -12    21
15  Hertha BSC Berlin (N)	20     4   8    8    25:31   -6     20
----------------------------------------------------------------------
16  1. FC Kaiserslautern	19     3   9    7    15:23   -8     18
----------------------------------------------------------------------
17  FC Augsburg (N)	  	20     3   8    9    19:33   -14    17
18  SC Freiburg	  	        19     4   4   11    23:42   -19    16

Dortmund opened Friday night with a match against a motivated Nürnberg. Der Club was fairly disciplined in the 1st half, and the Neons couldn’t break things down, despite pressing hard. However, a strike by Sebastian Kehl near half put Dortmund in the drivers seat. In the 2nd period, it was more of the same, and Nürnberg really didn’t have enough to threaten. Lucas Barrios finally got on the scoreboard to wrap things up. The press is ranting and raving how “Barrios is back!”, but really the ball just bounced off him into the net. The Paraguayan has had a rough season since the Copa America injury let Robert Lewandowski take the striker lead. Still, Dortmund decided not to sell him during winter, and certainly an in-form Barrios gives the league something to worry about. A valiant effort by Nürnberg, but they’re just not good enough.

Bayern escaped with a draw against a tough Hamburg squad. This was definitely not the same HSV squad that got their ass ripped 1-5 at home against Dortmund only a couple of weeks ago.  Italian midifielder opened his Bundesliga account with a hammer volley past Bayern’s wanker GK Manuel Neuer. Then an excellently organized defense around Heiko Westermann and a superb GK Pavel Drobny had Bayern frustrated. It was left to former HSV man Ivica Olic to sneak in back door and knife Hamburg late in the match. The final 20 minutes saw both teams press for the win, and Hamburg’s South Korean forward Son should have won it. He was put through, dribbled around Neuer, but went too wide and missed an open net. But Bayern had some decent chances as well. Overall, a well played match and the split of points goes in order.

Schalke had trouble with Mainz. The visitors packed the defense, and Schalke, despite looking nice with flowing play, basically forgot how to play when they got close. Mainz seized the lead and held it until Obasi equalized ater about an hour. Schalke continued to dominate, but the visitors held firm for a good point.

Wolfsburg and Gladbach had a hard fought match with few chances and less technical skill on exhibit. The visitors probably had a couple of better chances, but stealing this one probably would have been unfair.

Hertha definitely laid an egg against Hannover. The Berliners created many chances, but basically blew them all. The 96ers managed to steal all the points with Abdellaoue’s killer instinct and a superb GK Zieler. This is definitely one Hertha should not have lost, so if they get relegated, they can whine about this one…

Leverkusen struggled against Stuttgart, who appear to have a major hangover whenever they play. Lucky for them, the Aspirins were short for the last 30 minutes, as Kadlec got his ass tossed. Harnik scored the 2-2 for Stuttgart 1 minute before the end, and then Molinaro equalized fully – by getting red carded in injury for a ridiculous foul. Neither club can be too happy about this overall sucky performance.

Hoffenheim and Augsburg split the same 2-2 score. Good effort by Augsburg, but the Hoppers are just phoning it in these days. They gave minimun effort, and it’s only because Augsburg is a 2.Liga team that they didn’t embarass themselves. Perhaps they should do the league a favor and disband if they’re only going to go through the motions. For Augsburg, they probably could have won it, but they haven’t figured out how to go for the jugular yet.

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